Most of the Linux operating systems and open source software is completely free. This is because no one person or organisation owns Linux so it if free both in a monetary value and the fact that it is free for any one person or company to rewrite any code that is included in the Linux System allowing an individual to tailor it to their own needs. If Linus Torvalds ( The author and creator of Linux) decided to add some proprietary code and stated that all newly released versions where to have a cost involved, someone would simply take the last version (free) and do a small rewrite and a rename i.e.: DSN Linux, then all the Linux supporters would offer help in all concerned programming issues making its predecessor (new paid version) obsolete very very quickly. Furthermore and possibly the easier explanation is that all Linux is covered by the GNU Public License, stating that it and all its derivative workings must be distributed with it’s source code (Open Source), This then makes it extremely unlikely and difficult for anyone person or organisation to wave any monopolistic power in the Linux Community Sector. Microsoft is an organisation with licence fees and paid for subscription services on the vast majority of its Software and all of it’s Operating systems and while some will argue that these programs are good at what they do, why pay for something that you can get from the open source community for free??? In the current economical climate it is a wonder to us why we even have to ask this question, but if you wish to keep paying for “upgraded” software with a shiny new box then who are we to argue?
This maybe a weird one for some as to why it is mentioned in this list, due to Microsoft only software (.exe files are an example) will not freely work on a Linux System but with a small rework and download of compatibility programs (i.e.: Wine) the majority of Windows only software can run in some form or another which brings me to my point, Linux Systems are based on a POSIX compliant system so this means all POSIX applications and other compliant Unix Software and distributions can run freely in the Linux Universe with a very little amount if any reworking to run on your preferred OS (Gnome or KDE based are 2 examples). Whereas try and get a Linux based file (i.e.: .deb file or a .odt file) to run on a Windows System??
Because Linux is Open Source and Windows is not, one of the most beneficial and simplest benefits of the source code to talk/write about is the increased security and therefore reliability of Linux Software and Operating Systems. Because the users of Linux source code are readily available and able to identify any problems ( Ad-ware, Spyware and Viruses) and correct them submitting the programs back in distribution very quickly the need for expensive anti this and anti that programs required for window systems are necessary needed for the simple home user, there are of course open source “anti” programs out there Clam-AV is an example, if you really feel the need for that extra protection, To give an idea of this statement there where 500 known viruses in 1991 climbing to 100,000 known viruses for window’s in 2009 (some “PC Protection Companies state this figure is actually closer to 1 million, but then viruses make them money so I have taken an average) whereas in 2009 there was believed to be 612 known virus available for Mac PC’s and in 2007 there was 44 known viruses climbing to a shocking 46 in 2009 known for Linux Systems, it is also fair to mention that 38 of the Linux known Viruses only affect pre-2007 distro’s and since you have to put a password in to your OS to make any major changes in Linux you could say that you have to put the infection on yourself, whereas with Windows…….well I think the point has been made with the 100,000 vs 46.
4.Rate of Advancement
Linux has and will continue to advance in ways and at a rate that is impossible for any closed source systems such as Microsoft Windows and lets be honest about this, if the rate of advancement turns out to be….Vista (a swear word here), do you really want it?? There are a number of factors to the force of the Linux Advancement naming some:
- Short development time from a development team to the end user (you)
- Quantity and quality of feedback from the field
- The Vast Number of Open Source Developers compared to Closed Source developers
- Absence of any corporate say and “meddling” in the development and design process
- Independently Open Source developed sub-programs that are frequently included into Linux Distro’s giving vast advances in a short time frame.
5.No need to upgrade Hardware.
Another cost saving for the Linux Distro is the complete lack of need to upgrade any hardware if you do not want to, there are at the moment “light” versions of Linux distro’s that will quite happily work on a PC that in 7 years old but give you all the added security and application advancements that the “full” distros employ. This is because Windows is like a Ford car, they get better but more expensive, will only work with Ford parts and due to the more complicated systems are often made to slower by a governing body and you cant put a Ford Mondeo engine in a Ford Sierra. If you want to try this please feel free however I must state “don’t try this at home”, you can however try to put Windows 7 on a unmodified 7 year old PC, It won’t take long, if your lucky 1. to have a DVD player on the machine and or a USB port you may get about 10 mins in, now try a Linux Distro like LXDE or Xubuntu…..Point made.
I hope you have enjoyed our top 5 reasons (there are more) that Linux is better than Window’s and while we do not necessarily knock Microsoft (the Xbox 360 is good) Linux is, we believe the way forward, It is only in the past couple of years that Linux has started to become more and more known and accepted. With Open Source Software coming on in leaps and bounds as well, software like Sun Systems Open Office, Gimp Paint, Mozilla Thunderbird Mail and Firefox web browser. You have to ask yourself is the £150 bit of software that I’ve just brought needed and really worth it???….if it wasn’t, one word…….Linux.